Friday, March 20, 2009

Obama conforms to stereotype

The arrogant American abroad is a well known stereotype. They exhibit many traits but one of the most annoying is when they automatically assume that everyone can use their things, usually their money, and tries to force it on. I have experienced it myself once when selling something on eBay and the buyer mailed me dollar notes. Unless I go to the US anytime soon they are utterly useless (they're too low an amount to make changing them worthwhile and the small number of shops who do accept them are primarily ones for tourists at airports that neither sell much I want nor charge low prices).

A similar thing comes with DVDs. In order to prevent free trade in DVDs, especially in an era when one can buy directly from the US over the internet, the DVD industry included the region code system that means many DVDs can only be played on players configured for the same region. Some but not all DVD players in the UK can play discs from any region but it's not exactly "recommended" by the manufacturers. But the stereotypical American seems ignorant of the problem and assumes that any player in the world can play a Region 1 disc.

And Barack Obama has conformed to the stereotype. (Daily Telegraph: Gordon Brown is frustrated by 'Psycho' in No 10) His entire gift to Gordon Brown is utterly useless over here.

By the way this has a bearing on Brown's DVD meme. I now get just six points for seeing the films, as I don't have any of them on Region 1. How do other people do?

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